Leeds United are riding high in the Sky Bet Championship in a season that has given Leeds United fans more than a glimmer of hope after two seasons in the doldrums of mediocrity.
Mid-table finishes in the last two seasons and a pretty poor start to this season, Leeds in the bottom three after their opening six games, had become the bread and butter expectations of long-suffering Leeds United fans.
Every off-season it was the same cry on social media: “we NEED a goal scorer. We need that 20-a-season player.” Well, after a rocky start to the season, including a barracking from the Kop, that is just what Leeds United have in Kiwi skipper Chris Wood.
Just after the hour mark, against second-placed Brighton, Chris Wood made it 23 Sky Bet Championship goals for the season with this effort (below).
👀 Who else?
— Sky Bet (@SkyBet) March 18, 2017
Good work down the left by Charlie Taylor saw the talented young left-back beat Sam Baldock, before lifting in a dinked ball to the centre of the box towards Wood. The big Kiwi still had it all to do, the ball slightly behind him as he jumped. Leaning back, spine arced like a leaping salmon, Wood steered the header back across the goal and beyond the despairing dive of David Stockdale in the Brighton goal.
That 23rd goal of the season, enough to nudge Leeds in front, sent a packed Elland Road into raptures and chants of “All Leeds are We” could be heard ringing around Elland Road.
This got more raucous when a powerful surge by Souleymane Doukara into the Brighton area brought about a rash, lunging challenge by Brighton right-back Tomori and a penalty award for Leeds United – of which there was only ever going to be one taker.
— StephanLUFC (@StephanPhelan) March 18, 2017
Up stepped Chris Wood who dispensed the penalty with power and precision straight down the centre of the goal, Stockdale diving to his right. When that went in, the noise level rose massively with what proved to be the winning goal, a goal that took Chris Wood to 24 for the season and Leeds up to fourth in the table.
Leeds United fans react on Twitter to Chris Wood’s 23rd and 24th goals of the season
This is how the BBC reported Wood’s first of the night.
The deadlock is broken at Elland Road, a superb looping header from Chris Wood
— BBC Sport (@BBCSport) March 18, 2017
And this is how Leeds United reported it.
63' Wood finds the back of the net with an amazing looping header following Taylor's cross, erupting Elland Road! 1-0
— Leeds United (@LUFC) March 18, 2017
There’s plenty of this.
There’s also more than enough of this too.
HAAAAAAAVE IT #LUFC
— Joe Hughes (@JoeHughes95) March 18, 2017
There’s more than a little happiness in this Tweet.
There was plenty of this chant ringing around the ground too – it might tempt fate but only just.
Na na na na na na na Leeds are going up going up Leeds are going up! #lufc
— Danny (@DannyHearn94) March 18, 2017
After the game ended, it was a chance for Leeds fans to experience a lowered heart rate and a euphoric come-down.
Huge 3 points for Leeds tonight, play-offs all but in the bag. All Leeds Aren't We!! #lufc
— Nick Beckett (@DrGonzo2411) March 18, 2017
This fan is existential about the game, but a positivist about the end result.
It's a game of moments and chances, Brighton didn't take any of theirs and we've got Chris Wood #lufc
— Tom Raynor (@TOMLUFC1995) March 18, 2017
However, the best way to sum it all up is with this tweet.
Chris Wood scores goals! Haven't enjoyed a season of football for ages! #lufc
— ZAKK ♧★ (@ZakkPricee) March 18, 2017